Being able to enjoy breakfast during the week is a treat that doesn't come around too often — not just sitting at the table and having a few eggs and a glass of juice, but going out somewhere. A bit of extra time on a workday morning is not something that should be squandered at the usual breakfast joints.
If you’re the type to seek local wherever you eat, a wonderful spot for a no-fuss kind of breakfast is at The Heights on Abrams Parkway. It's a narrow restaurant, flanked on one side by a full-length bar. Its design is modern enough to keep from falling out of date but retains a homegrown feel. The staff is informal but charmingly polite. The menu is simple but covers all the bases. It offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, coffee and cocktails.
The breakfast menu is simple and short, mostly consisting of a spread of common players. Eggs, hash brown potatoes, migas, biscuits, pancakes and oatmeal are the main items, although they do have a house-cured salmon lox bagel, and their pancakes sit a few seats outside the norm.
The toasted oatmeal granola pancakes ($8 for a short stack, $9.50 for a full stack) is a long name for a complex dish. Be aware that you should be seriously hungry to attempt the full stack. Each pancake is tall, with a soft and chewy crumb. The pancake batter is made with toasted oats in it, which lends a rustic texture. They're topped with butter, caramel apple praline syrup, fresh fruit and crunchy granola. The overall flavor is that of whole grains with a luscious, sticky sweetness that penetrates each bite.
Fresh-made lox is a big step above the prepackaged stuff. Premade lox shipped from far away is often over-cured to extend shelf life. Only when it's made fresh, either in-house or nearby, does smoked salmon remain tender without becoming over-salted salmon jerky. The Heights would make any Jewish delicatessen proud with its lox ($10.50), and while I would argue they should be toasting their bagels, they could serve their salmon and cream cheese on a leather boot and I would probably try to eat it. It also helps that the dish is beautiful, with all the fresh colors of red onion, dill sprigs and bright salmon flesh.
The Heights is unfortunately easy to overlook. It's not flashy, and it doesn’t want to be. Yet most who have stumbled across it one way or another find themselves loyal customers. It's the kind of place where the staff is as genuine as the food. As the divide between high-end breakfast and chain restaurants widens, The Heights is a perfect in-between for those who want simplicity at a fair price.
The Heights, 2015 Abrams Parkway (East Dallas), 214-824-5800
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.